One month on – What I have learnt so far
It is one month to do the day that I saw Arcade Fire at Hyde Park and had left the offices of Scope as an employee for the last time. You may remember my reasons for going self employed were career, leisure and health related. This post will update you on how things are fairing a month down the line. Believe me, I have learnt a lot!
Health-wise I feel good, but in July I normally do. I will see if I reap any real benefits in the winter months. However I feel very energised and not having so many early mornings or rush hour traffic is a benefit.
Leisure-wise I thoroughly enjoyed the Wombats and Snoop Dogg headlining Lovebox. I was also lucky enough to guest blog on http://www.festivalsforall.com/article/lovebox-video-review. I have had ample time to text, phone and entertain my friends. Whilst work is busy and often on my mind, I do have more energy to socialise. I just need to earn a bit more £££ to fund a wilder lifestyle, lol. All in good time hey.
Career-wise it is probably too early to say, but business is good. I have gathered enough sponsors for my upcoming webinar series to pay the mortgage this month Also I am rolling out a similar series with Hackney council and their service users, so August should be cool. I realised how much I love using my personal and professional experience to inspire and inform other disabled people. In one month I have engaged with more people on twitter, had live webcam chats as far as Australia and planned so many cool projects! Essentially I LOVE MY JOB!!!
So what have I learnt? I learnt time is precious, planning is key, but be willing to change the plans and you cannot beat hard graft and downright dirty work to make progress. This is better explained in context.
In week one I attended the IOF Convention, a Channel 4 disability networking event, met a production company, Hackney council and Wheel Easy. They were all great for marketing my work, securing contracts and deciding certain things weren’t for me. However I didn’t manage to get any actual tasks done, I spent most of the week in traffic jams and spent too much on parking and penalty tickets. I immediately realised Skype calls are best, to limit actual meetings to one day per week and double check all blue badge parking rules.
In week two I spent time with AJ and Melissa (who you all know of now I am sure from http://misfit-inc.com/). We talked, strategised, planned , dreamed and got drunk. It really helped me (not just the alcohol) to realise I had to plan and work on the value adding parts of my services. I clarified to myself the direction I am taking with my blog, webinars, the magazine and campaigns. Now I have a belief that even if the early months are tougher, my work will eventually change the world for disabled people.
As a consequence in weeks 3 and 4 I have just got my head down and worked so hard it hurts. My webinars are being launched at the weekend, Hackneys next week and I emailed over 200 Local Authorities and disability organisations about my webinars and disability consultancy services. If you know anyone who may be interested, please do get in touch. Also http://disabilityhorizons.com/ is being redesigned by Misfit-inc and will be relaunched next month. Not sure when I sleep after reading that back…
Now entering month 2, having survived, I would recommend this to anyone. I am so motivated, have found the coolest ‘workshifting’ cafe with wifi in Stoke Newington (where I write this from now) and feel like I am doing something so significant and so worthwhile. I am smiling more than usual (and as you know, that is a lot)!
Don’t forget to subscribe to my blog on the sign up area to the right of my website. This blog has been about me, but the next few are all about you, so do not miss out! Also you can follow me on twitter @martynsibley. I hope you are all well and ready for a great weekend.